The right to free elections (2014)
The right to free elections is one of the most difficult rights to define: while it is an objective and essential principle in any democratic society, it is also a fundamental personal right on which every citizen can rely. It is an individual right, but it is meaningful only as part of a collective process. That same right, in conjunction with the right to vote and the right to stand for election, needs to be practised in a democratic way which also brings into play many other rights and freedoms, before, during and after the election itself. It is also one of the most highly valued rights at the Council of Europe because it helps to promote the “true democracy” which underpins the Organisation, alongside the rule of law and the honouring of fundamental freedoms.
This book examines the main Council of Europe legal texts and sources on this topic: conventions, resolutions, recommendations and guidelines, without forgetting the abundant case law of the European Court of Human Rights.
It is a work for legal practitioners, students and, more generally, anyone interested in how Europe and democracy go hand in hand.
1.1. Globalisation of the right to free elections
1.2. European sources of the right to free elections
1.3. The European electoral heritage
2. THE SCOPE OF THE RIGHT TO FREE ELECTIONS
2.1. The scope of Article 3 of Protocol No. 1
2.2. The connection between the right to free elections and the other rights guaranteed by the Convention
3. THE RULES GOVERNING THE RIGHT TO FREE ELECTIONS
3.1. The characteristics of suffrage
3.2. Conditions for exercising suffrage
3.3. The choice of electoral system and electoral rules
3.4. Supervision of interference in suffrage
4. ELECTORAL OPERATIONS
4.1. Fundamental safeguards
4.2. Conduct of electoral operations
4.3. Judicial supervision of electoral operations
4.4. The observation and evaluation of elections
CASE LAW INDEX